Director’s Series: Science, Technology, and Policy: Science and Technology for Nuclear Nonproliferation



Sara Pozzi, University of Michigan

Date and Time

November 4, 2021 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM


RSVP Required.


Only those with an active Stanford ID with access to William J Perry Conference Room in Encina Hall may attend in person. This event will not be livestreamed.

For fall quarter 2021, CISAC will be hosting hybrid events. Many events will offer limited-capacity in-person attendance for Stanford faculty, staff, fellows, visiting scholars, and students in accordance with Stanford’s health and safety guidelines, and be open to the public online via Zoom. All CISAC events are scheduled using the Pacific Time Zone. 



About the Event: Nuclear nonproliferation has been a pressing societal need since the development of nuclear weapons. Preventing the further spread of nuclear capabilities that could lead to a nuclear weapons program is a crucial mission that requires both technical and policy advances. Several international treaties have been put into place to curb the expansion of nuclear capabilities. Nevertheless, there are states that may be pursuing elements of an overt or covert nuclear weapons program. New science and technology developments are needed to verify the existing or proposed treaties in this area and to ensure that nuclear weapons are never used again.

In this presentation, I will discuss these challenges and some of the recent advances in science and technology that contribute to solving them. I will present our Consortium for Monitoring, Technology, and Verification (MTV), a consortium of 14 universities and 13 national laboratories working together on these issues. I will highlight research projects including our studies on the fundamental emissions from nuclear fission and the development of new detection systems for nuclear materials detection, localization, and characterization. These systems were shown to aid the International Atomic Energy Agency in its nuclear safeguards and verification activities that have direct relevance to nuclear security. I will also talk about our efforts in furthering diversity, equity, and inclusion, which are crucial for building teams that can successfully address these societal issues.


About the Speaker: Professor Sara Pozzi earned her M.S. and Ph.D. in nuclear engineering at the Polytechnic of Milan, Italy in 1997 and 2001, respectively. She is a Professor of Nuclear Engineering and Radiological Sciences and a Professor of Physics at the University of Michigan where she has graduated 25 Ph. D. students as advisor or co-advisor. Her research interests include the development of new methods for nuclear materials detection, identification, and characterization for nuclear nonproliferation, safeguards, and national security programs. She is the founding Director of the Consortium for Verification Technology (CVT) 2014-2019 and the Consortium for Monitoring, Technology, and Verification (MTV) 2019-2024, two large consortia of multiple universities and national laboratories working together to develop new technologies needed for nuclear treaty verification.

In 2018, Professor Pozzi was named the inaugural Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) for the UM College of Engineering. In this capacity, she heads the DEI implementation committee and works to ensure that the students, faculty, and staff are increasingly diverse, everyone is treated equally, and everyone is included.

She is the recipient of many awards, including the Institute of Nuclear Materials Management (INMM) Vince J DeVito Distinguished Service Award and the Department of Energy Outstanding Mentor Award, and is a Fellow of the American Nuclear Society, the INMM, and the IEEE.